ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - Regency Beauty Institute is permanently shutting down.
An email was sent Wednesday to students and employees at the Roanoke location along with 78 other locations across the country.
Not only are those employees out of work unexpectedly, but the 105 local students who have been paying tuition, some even close to graduating, won't be able to complete their program.
According to the State Council of Higher Education, a total of 421 students were registered in Virginia. That is in addition to thousands more nationwide.
Students and employees were given several hours on Thursday to collect their belongings at the Roanoke studio.
According to Regency Beauty Institutes website, additional time will be given on Friday afternoon.
Employees who spoke with WSLS 10 off-camera said they are angry that the announcement came with no notice.
In a statement, Regency Beauty Institute blames a lack of cash, declining numbers of cosmetology students and tough regulations on for-profit education institutions for the closure:
It is with great sadness that we announce that after more than 50 years of educating cosmetology students, Regency Beauty Institute is permanently closing on September 28, 2016. This closure affects all 79 campuses.This is incredibly difficult news for everyone affected: especially our students, teachers, and staff. We recognize that some of you may be finding this out for the first time by reading this. We are truly sorry for the abrupt nature of this information.How did this happen? In short, the organization does not have the cash to continue to run the business. There are multiple intertwined reasons: declining numbers of cosmetology students nationwide, a negative characterization of for-profit education by regulators and politicians that continues to worsen and, in light of these factors, an inability to obtain continued financing.This is not another case of a school being forced to shut down because it was accused of wrongdoing. We held ourselves to high educational and ethical standards. The environment is simply not one that allows us to remain open. We diligently explored a range of strategic options that would benefit our students, teachers, and staff — and allow us to remain open. Unfortunately, those efforts were not successful.
Information for Regency Beauty Institute Students
Get information on personal items, transcripts, teach-out schools and loans. Information for Students
Information for People Scheduled for a Tour and Guests of our Student Salons
There will be no tours and no guest services. We are deeply sorry for the inconvenience this causes.
In response, the State Council of Education released the following statement:
"The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia regrets the closing of any school that has helped Virginians reach their goals in work and life. As with any school closure, the agency will work with Regency Beauty Institute to maintain its records. We wish its staff and former students the best as they continue their careers."
Regency's website says teachout programs will be offered to students; however, no partners have been listed for Virginia.
The website lists the Virginia State Cosmotogoly Board for more information. In a phone conversation; however, a representative with the state cosmetology board said they have yet to receive notice from Regency about the closure.
The representative says they learned about the closure from students who called looking for answers.
The board said as soon as information and resources are available to local students, it will be posted on their website.